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Russia again cuts natural gas exports to European countries

PoliticsRussia again cuts natural gas exports to European countries

Prague (The Times Groupe)- Russian gas supplies to the European Union were cut again on Friday, including halving the supply to Italy and Slovakia, as countries sought to lessen their dependence on the Russian supply following the war in Ukraine.

This is the third day of significant fuel price reductions in Europe, which also include cuts in Germany and Austria. As a result, energy prices in the European Union are spiking further, leading to record inflation.

The Russian government has blamed a technical issue for the shutdown of the key Nord Stream 1 pipeline serving Germany and France, saying that equipment being refurbished in Canada was stuck there due to Western sanctions. Germany and Italy called the reductions a political move, and they have escalated energy tensions in Europe, after Russia cut off natural gas to Poland, Bulgaria, Finland, the Netherlands, and Denmark in the past.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the reductions are “blackmail (against) both individual countries and Europe as a whole.”

SPP director Richard Prokypcak told a conference in Bratislava that Russia would reduce deliveries to Slovakia by 50%. The reason for the reduction is not clear.

Russian state energy giant Gazprom told Italian gas company Eni on the same day that it would provide only 50% of the gas requested for Friday, reducing the flow to one of Europe’s biggest importers of Russian gas for a third day.

Gazprom reduced Italy’s delivery request by 15% on Wednesday. ANSA reported that the Russian company dropped it by 35% on Thursday. 40% of Italy’s gas comes from Russia, but the country has been looking for alternative sources in countries such as Algeria.

France no longer receives natural gas from Russia. GRTGaz, a French gas network operator, said that Russian gas supplies via Germany have ceased following a 60% drop in the first five months of the year.

Despite the halt in Russian supplies, the operator said Friday that no disruptions in gas supplies are expected this summer, in part because more shipments are arriving through Spain. Russia provides about 17% of France’s natural gas, but gas is only about 16% of the country’s energy mix.

According to German Economy Ministry spokesman Stephan Gabriel Haufe, the cut in supplies to France was “the result of the already-known reduction” in supplies via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. He did not know the specific reasons for the cut.

The Russian government says Canadian sanctions prevented Siemens Energy from delivering equipment that had been sent to be overhauled. According to the German government, maintenance shouldn’t have been a problem until the fall, and the Russian decision was intended to sow uncertainty and drive prices up.

“We and Germany are certain that it’s a lie, that there is a political use of gas by Russia,” Italian Premier Mario Draghi said on Thursday in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital. European countries

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